Indian nationals need a new visa: Britain is shooting itself in the foot with its backward system
By Tim Hewish, Royal Commonwealth Society
This article first appeared in City AM on 13 July 2016
The UK-India relationship is one of both traditional and contemporary strength. Current business secretary Sajid Javid has described the partnership as being at a 'key juncture' and as providing 'opportunities we would be foolish to ignore'.
And with a UK-India trade agreement hailed a 'deal made in heaven' by the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII), now is indeed the moment for the UK to reassert its global attractiveness.
That is why we have launched a report in partnership with leading aviation and tourism groups recommending that the UK matches the recent UK-Chinese deal and offers Indian nationals a new two-year £87 visitor visa for business and leisure purposes.
Last year, 420,000 Indians visited the UK and spent a total of £433m. Yet Britain’s market share of global Indian tourists has halved over the last decade, costing the UK economy an estimated £0.5bn per year and over 8,000 jobs...
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Articles published elsewhere:
Britain 'must improve visa process to attract wealthy Indian tourists’ London Evening Standard 13 July 2016
Call for cheaper, simpler visas for Indians to boost UK tourism International Business Times 6 July 2016
UK report calls for cheaper, simpler visas for Indians Times of India 6 July 2016